Josef Frank Exhibition - by Joyce

Josef Frank
Fashion and Textile Museum, Bermondsey, just behind London Bridge Station

Jane and I went to see this exhibition today (3rd February) and enjoyed all the colour and pattern.

Josef Frank was born in Vienna in 1885 where he studied architecture. Due to growing anti-Semitism he moved to Stockholm with his Swedish wife Anna in 1933. As a partner in a successful interior design firm in Vienna he had designed houses, interiors and furniture as well as fabric patterns. He felt a home should be cosy and comfortable with soft sofas, beautiful hardwoods and fabrics featuring splendid patterns in a multitude of colours. 

The exhibition features many of his fabric designs by the natural world.  For example, the fruit and vegetables for an Italian meal, all growing from the same plant.  Another fabric featured a bird motif 3,500 years old from a fresco at the Palace of Knossos.  The Indian Tree of Life was another inspiration as were butterflies and seaweeed.


He was fascinated by the American flora seen in field manuals and designed fabric with fruit, leaves and flowers from different plants all mixed together.

The colours were always bright and patterns created with dots and lines within bold shapes linked by sinuous curves of river or vine.

A woodblock from which to print was shown alongside the fabric it created and many paintings were shown beside the resulting fabric.

Josef Frank was influenced by William Morris and shared his love of nature. There was an interesting display of watercolours too.

This is just a brief summary, the exhibition continues until 7th May and is well worth a visitThere is a good pizza restaurant nearby too, Franco Marca's.